It looks like the Ford Motor Company is in a bit of hot water right now for allowing President Trump to not wear a face mask at all times while he toured the automaker's factory in Michigan. The company held a special tour for the US President recently and Trump was seen not consistently wearing it.
“I had one before, but I didn't want to give the press the pleasure of seeing it. But I was wearing it in a back area,” said Trump.
The President even mentioned that it was not necessary for all places since everybody in the factory has been tested, including himself.
“I was given a choice when I had one on in an area where they preferred it so I put it on and it was very nice, it looked very nice. But they said that it's not necessary,” added Trump.
When asked what example it would send to other Americans, Trump simply stated that it will set an example both ways since he did wear a face mask, albeit inconsistently.
Now while this may be simply viewed as President Trump maintaining his 'strong' image before the press (Trump has been extremely averse to the wearing of face masks while in public), the state of Michigan was none too pleased with Trump not wearing a mask while he was at Ford's Ypsilanti factory.
Dana Nessel, Michigan's Attorney General, slammed the President for “conveying the worst possible message” by refusing to wear a mask in front of reporters. In addition, Neseel said that the state of Michigan and Ford will have a serious talk with regards to what happened in Ypsilanti.
"I think that we're going to have to have a very serious conversation with Ford in the event that they permitted the President to be in publicly enclosed places in violation of the order. They knew exactly what the order was and if they permitted anyone, even the President of the United States, to defy that order, I think it has serious health consequences potentially to their workers,” said Nessel.
Nessel added that Trump is no longer welcome to visit any undisclosed locations in Michigan after what happened at Ford's Ypsilanti factory. The Attorney General also said that under Governor Gretchen Whitmer's Executive Order No.2020-91, the wearing of face masks are mandatory in enclosed spaces, not to mention the suspension of all tours in manufacturing facilities. This means that Trump broke state law.
“Speaking on behalf of my department, that's right he is no longer welcome. Today's events were extremely disappointing, and yet totally predictable. Dr. Fauci, his own medical expert, recommends the wearing of face masks in public enclosed spaces, and the CDC makes that recommendation,” added Neseel.
There is no statement yet from Ford regarding the recent incident. But the company did claim that they did share its safety policies with the White House before the tour actually took place – including the requirement to wear face masks at all times. Even William Clay Ford Jr. (aka Bill Ford Jr.), the executive chairman of Ford Motor Company, asked the President to wear a face mask as he was touring the facility. However, the company said that “the White House has its own safety and testing policies in place and will make its own determination”.
With Ford just restarting US operations last March 18, this recent fiasco could affect Ford's plans to ramp up production in Michigan. As of today, the state of Michigan currently has 52,350 confirmed cases of COVID-19, along with over 5,000 deaths. With these kinds of figures, it's not surprising that the state was not happy with Ford and Trump.